The Pontifex Maximus, Ambrogio Sangria calmly leaned back in his seat as if nothing had transpired. "Please continue, Pontifex's," Ambrogio ordered, before leaning in his seat to watch the Pontifex's.
Every single vampire in the room was much more subdued including those like Dario. The Pontifex's spoke politely and quickly getting to the point of each topic. With the fear of the sun in them the vampires swiftly and without any argument resolved every single issue for the time being, before turning to gaze at the Pontifex Maximus.
"I see that you are all tired," Ambrogio said. "You did well, Pontifex's, you are all dismissed. As we finished early, please enjoy the refreshments provided, or you may retire to your coffins as you see fit."
"By your leave, Pontifex Maximus," all the vampires said, before bowing, and departing one by one in a neat orderly line from the room.
Before the last of the vampires have left the room, Ambrogio says, "Pontifex Luther, and Hecate, please remain behind. I wish to have a private word with you."
Both Pontifex's share a wary glance, while the rest of the vampires scurry out in relief. The door shuts firmly behind them as Ambrogio gestured to the seats at his side. "Come sit by me." It was not a request.
The two vampires sat on either side of him with Hecate on his right and Luther on his left. "I apologize about this evening's distasteful actions, but they were needed," Ambrogio explained without any trace of guilt or shame. "Some of the younger vampires have been a bit unruly as of late, and they needed to be reminded of their proper places."
"Of course, Pontifex Maximus," the two vampires said in chorus.
Ambrogio accepts their words as a matter of fact, before saying," Now that we have an opening in the council, I still wish for a younger one to serve. I feel that their voices should not be completely shushed. Who would the both of you recommend?"
Hecate thoughtfully purses her lips for a moment before saying, "Sanguini might be a good option. He is a mid-ranked vampire with a sire descended from a higher-ranked sire. And is calm in difficult situations for the most part, but he does have a slight penchant for younger girls."
"And your recommendation, Luther?" Ambrogio turned and asked.
Luther puts his fingers together in front of him. "I would recommend Orpheus D'Arcy," Luther replied. "Young, but still comes from a long line of Pontifices. He's been trained on how to properly comport himself within the council and out. He'd be a good addition to the council."
Hecate slowly nods her head, but pointedly says, "However, he has a certain penchant for children that we cannot ignore. His sire had done a good job of curbing that habit and any unfortunate transgressions. But we both know what would happen should the Ministry of Magic come to learn that a Pontifex has such perversions. While Sanguini despite his taste for younger women, they are all of legal age, sixteen and up."
"What do you think, Pontifex Maximus?" Luther said as both vampires turned to study the old, wrinkled vampire.
"No, neither of them is suitable," Ambrogio said with a frown. "Recommend another."
Hecate having already tested the waters with Sanguini reveals her true candidate. "I recommend, Delia, Pontifex Maximus," Hecate firmly said. "She is a former witch that was turned. Not only is she clear-headed, but she possesses magic which will greatly benefit the purposes of the council."
Ambrogio nods his head slowly in approval but waits before making his final decision. Turning towards Luther, Ambrogio waits for the Pontifex to speak.
To both of their surprises, Luther says, "I agree with Hecate, out of all of the young vampires that we have, Delia would be the best option to have join the council. And since she is still young and beautiful, but more importantly a former witch, the wizarding world will be more at ease with her, when we send her to represent our interests."
"Very well," Ambrogio said. "I shall announce her ascension to Pontifex after the New Year. Now go on you two, I am tired and will retire to bed early. I am old and need my sleep."
Hecate and Luther rise to their feet and bow, before leaving the room. They were not foolish enough to offer the Pontifex Maximus aid to help him to his feet. The only vampire that had foolishly ever tired found his head ripped off shoulders. No one ever since then suggested that the Pontifex Maximus was old despite his advanced age.
The two of them slowly walk down the stone halls admiring the decorations and watching vampires mingling down below on the lower level. Halting at a viewing balcony, Hecate quietly drinks in the festive scene before her. She could not remember the last time she had been so very carefree at least not for many years now.
"I am tired, Luther," Hecate confessed earning an appraising glance from her companion.
"Why ever so, dearest?" Luther asked as he leaned against an Italian marble pillar and folded his arms over his chest. "We are immortal."
Hecate lips twitch in a faint smile. "Surely, you jest, Luther. We are long-lived, but certainly far from mortal. We will still die like every other creature on this planet, no more, and no less."
"I know, Hecate," Luther said. "But you still have not answered my question."
Hecate turns away from the vampire and glances back down at the vampires dancing down below. "I am one hundred and twenty years, Luther," Hecate recalled. "I was sixty years old and deathly afraid of dying, and so I sought a cure to Death. Well, I found a solution, which I thought was perfect."
"But what?" Luther interrupted.
"As of late, I find myself missing things of old," Hecate quietly answered. "I miss all the colors that life used to have then. The brightness of the day, the sun. I can barely remember what the sun felt like on my skin or a cloudless blue sky. I miss those moments the most."
"It is merely old age, Hecate," Luther confessed. "It happens to us all."
Hecate arched her brow at the vampire in disbelief. "I will believe that, when I see that, Luther."
"True, I do not show it," Luther admitted. "However, I do understand. We all do, we just tend to not admit it that very often."
Hecate sighed and says, "Yes, well, this evening certainly made me feel my age."
Glancing up at Luther, Hecate turns to say, "I disliked Victoria with every being of my body, but she young almost a childes really. Her vibrant candlelight should not have been flickered out so soon."
"The Pontifex Maximus is what he is," Luther murmured.
"Yes, I know that he did it for the good of the coven," Hecate huffed. "But still, I suppose I shall miss my nemesis."
"As if you lack any," Luther joked, before grabbing Hecate by the hand. "Now come along and dance at least once with me, old woman,"
"Old Woman!" Hecate shouted in vexation, before allowing herself to be dragged to the dancefloor by the male vampire. Perhaps, the old man was right. She just needed to live a little. And what an irony that statement was to one who was undead.